I don't know about you all, but when I hear the name Eric Thomas aka ET The Hip Hop Preacher, the very first thing I think of is "When you want to succeed as bad as you want to breathe, then you'll be successful". This weekend I realized that wanting it badly is just the prelude to the work it takes to get it.
As a speaker, your first responsibility is to see your craft as a business, especially if you intend on making a living from it. Your second responsibility is to avoid being a part of the status quo, especially because a recent study by the University of Scranton suggests that only 8% of people actually achieve their goals. To avoid being part of the 92%, here are four tips to help you achieve your goals. (Click Title To View Full Article)
“Fair or not, people make assumptions about your intelligence and education simply by the words you use.” This line was made popular by Verbal Advantage, a company who produces audio vocabulary and communication improvement programs in its advertising. As a teacher of public speaking and communications, I would take this line even further and say that people make those same assumptions based on not only your word choice, but also how you deliver or present the words you choose.
One of the first questions I ask my students who take my public speaking classes is “What is public speaking?,” and I receive all sorts of obvious answers except one…… That is every time we open our mouths, we are public speaking. This includes talking on the telephone or having a one-on-one conversation with a friend or colleague. Over the life of the course I share many strategies and techniques to help my students become proficient and unafraid to present their thoughts and ideas in a manner that would leave their audience regardless of size assuming that he or she was indeed intelligent and educated.
In addition to teaching public speaking, I am also a radio talk show host and had the pleasure of interviewing the founder of Black Speakers Network, Mr. Brian J. Olds. During our conversation I shared with him concepts that I had learned and share with my students in my course. The concepts in and of themselves are not new, however, are defined in a very common sense way. While I wish I could take credit for creating them, I cannot and I have no problem with giving the proper credit where it is due. They are taken from one of the books that I use as a reference in my courses titled LIFETIME CONVERSATION GUIDE: The Key to Success with People by James K. Van Fleet. I share the Seven Distracting Mannerisms and Seven Important Don’ts to Remember with you here in this blog post and encourage you to learn what not to do and stay away from when you are delivering a speech. Learning what not to do is just as important as learning what to do.
Seven Distracting Mannerisms
1. The Dying Warrior. In this position, the speaker leans heavily on the lectern. He wears an air of total exhaustion and never moves. All he needs to complete this picture is a feather drooping down over his forehead from an Indian headband.
2. The Fig Leaf is favored by the speaker who has no lectern to lean on. He stands solidly with both hands clasped in front below the waist, feet 18 inches apart and completely immovable, his body solid as a rock.
3. The Walkie-Talkie is a descriptive term in itself. This one is the pacer who never holds still for a single moment. Most "walkie talkies" seem to be would-be lawyers who imagine themselves pacing back and forth in front of the jury.
4. The Chained Elephant stands with his weight first on one foot, then on the other. He goes nowhere, but constantly moves his feet in position, shuffling back and forth.
5. The Change Counter constantly counts the money in his pocket. Soon the audience hears only the jingle of coins rather than what he's saying.
6. The Swordsman works with a pointer and a chart. He has the bad habit of fighting imaginary duels with his pointer as if he were holding a sword.
7. The Baton Twirler also uses a chart and a pointer, but he is more advanced in his techniques than the"swordsman." He uses his pointer as if he were entertaining the crowd at half time.
Seven Important Don'ts to Remember
1. Don't bluff. Never bluff to cover up a lack of knowledge. If you don't know the answer, say so. Then find the answer and let the person know as soon as you can.
2. Don't use profanity or obscenities. Not even a tiny "Damn!" or "Hell" is ever permissible. The moment you use profanity, you run the risk of losing the respect and attention of some of your listeners.
3. Don't use sarcasm or ridicule. This is especially true if you have a captive audience. Your listeners will resent it if they can't respond in the same sarcastic manner. If a person resents you, he won't listen to you.
4. Don't talk down to your listeners. You might be smarter than your listeners, but only in one subject, and you selected that one. Never treat your listeners as ignorant people if you want them to keep listening to you.
5. Don't lose your patience. If a listener asks you to cover a point again, don't get upset. His inability to understand might be your failure to explain it properly. Repeat the information or use a different approach to make your point clear to him.
6. Don't hide behind the lectern. You must be clearly visible to the audience. If the lectern doesn't show you at least from the waist up, be brave and step out to the side.
7. Don't make excuses. Don't start off by saying, "Ill-prepared as I am....I didn't have a chance to go over this material.....I'm not really qualified to speak on this..... I wouldn't be here, but..." I've heard these comments and so have you. You were turned off immediately, right? Well, if you use them, your listeners will be turned off too. Never apologize or make excuses. Only amateurs do that; professionals never do. Be a pro.
Marc Medley, Host The Reading Circle at Book Talk Radio
By: Karin Yearwood
Whether your answer is yes or no, BSN’s first Master’s webinar is worth your time. This one-hour presentation, hosted by social media and business development expert, Tammira Lucas, will help guide you as you develop or further your business plan.
Mrs. Lucas uses her professional experience and expertise to inform business owners and entrepreneurs on the top four social media platforms:
Your goal is to decide which platform/s is appropriate for your brand and/or product. The presentation will tell you specific platform features and demographics that are useful when developing your business strategy.
Moreover, there are 12 Ways to Build Your Social Media Brand. During this segment, you will learn inexpensive and time efficient methods to leverage your content.
After you master your platform, then you need to hook your audience with content like a P.I.R.A.T.E. Can you guess the meaning of each letter?
Finally, Mrs. Lucas, the Business Doctor, will prescribe you with a winning toolkit to become a true master of social media. In this kit you will receive:
- A list of content calendar tools to help you manage and save time when growing your business
- How to monetize your social media pages
- Drive and maintain traffic from your social media page to other platforms like company websites, blogs, etc.
- Apps that will supplement specific features of each major platform
For entrepreneurs, time is money and it must be invested wisely. For only 1 hour of your time, you will maximize your understanding of social media and discover its true value to you as a business expert.
Name any one of your favorite public speakers, past or present, and I bet they have written at least one book during their careers. No matter what your expertise or industry, writing a book can quite literally change the trajectory of your speaking business. Here are 5 reasons why every speaker should focus their efforts on authoring at least one book during their speaking career.
If you missed this Black Speakers Network Masters Session in Baltimore you are in luck! We recorded just about the entire session below. Award winning entrepreneur, author, speaker and consultant Raevyn Jones, stopped by to drop some serious knowledge on us with her valuable message around “Email Marketing Real Talk”.
Raevyn made it clear that as a speaker if you are not leveraging the power of email marketing then you are leaving a lot of money on the table. Our ability to be successful in this industry is directly tied to the number of people that we are consistently adding value to. If you don’t have an email list or if you are only relying on social media to grow your following beware! This interactive session is designed for someone at the very beginning of your email marketing journey.
If you attended live or watched the video, let us know which of her tips you plan to implement in your speaking business.